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Mark Greenberg, of Capespan North America
Report on table grape market
According to Mark Greenberg, CEO and President of Capespan North America, the table grape market of the East Coast of the United States has remained slow until week 5-2018, while imports from Peru, Chile and South Africa continue unabated. Cold storage facilities in the Delaware River are filling up and incoming containers account for most of the warehouse traffic.
Greenberg states that while trucks are being loaded, the overall activity is unfortunately disproportionate to the volume of cargo that has arrived and been placed in storage. "Until Week 4, Chile shipped 7.5 million boxes (61,325 metric tonnes) of table grapes to the East Coast of the United States (USEC) compared to 12.5 million boxes (104,672 metric tonnes) in the previous season. But with the table grape harvest currently in full swing in the Central Valley of Chile, the outflows will only increase; in fact, in week 4 alone, Chilean suppliers shipped 1.7 million boxes (13,925 metric tonnes) of table grapes to the USEC, which will begin arriving to the Delaware River next week."
South Africa has also exported a substantial volume to the East Coast, but with a strong focus on the Canadian market, which is more accessible. During week 3, South Africa shipped 120,600 boxes of table grapes to the USEC, while Canada received 1.3 million boxes of South African table grapes, and with more on the way, as stressed by the representative of Capespan.
"Chilean grape traders and shippers may feel inclined, at first, to compete with this large South African volume arriving in Canada, but a clever observer will see that this fruit will divert Canadian demand for Chilean table grapes; grapes that generally come from the USEC and which will now have to be absorbed by the US market," added the representative of Capespan.
Greenberg also pointed out that at week 5-2018, Peru also continued to ship fruit to the USEC. Until Week 4, Peru had loaded more than 9 million boxes of seedless grapes to the USEC and another 920,000 boxes of Red Globes. "At weeks 6 and 7, we can expect Peru to supply 1.5 million boxes of seedless grapes to the USEC," said the CEO.
Greenberg explains in his report that on Week 5, the US market saw the arrival of 1.2 million boxes of table grapes from Chile to the USEC, of which almost half corresponded to Flame. During week 6, the arrival of another 2 million boxes was expected, a load also consisting mainly of Flame.
The professional stressed that although there will be a gap between the Chilean grape shipments this season and those of the previous campaign, a large volume of this year's fruit will still be accumulated, which will cause the shipments of Chilean table grapes to the USEC to be about 37% lower than last season (week 6).
"In any case, the market remains slow and this is becoming worrisome." The weak condition on arrival of a large part of the Flame is adding extra pressure, especially when considering that the Flame accounts for more than 50% of the Chilean grape shipments to the USEC to date. The result of this abundance is low prices, flooded wholesale markets and retailers that don't generally focus on grapes," points out the Capespan professional.
Publication date: 2/14/2018
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